DJ Overconsumption
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  1. #1

    Default DJ Overconsumption

    Hi DJTT, I come to you with a problem that I'm facing every day. I'm hoping that others on this forum have the same problem and can share some of their strategies to overcome the issue if possible.

    First I'll give you a bit of background about my current situation:
    I've been DJing for around a year and a half, I've just finished acquiring the club standard setup for my home practising and I've started getting my face out around the town I live in. Music consumption is very much the most important thing in my life, I don't do any production but I'm so hyped up for so many releases from so many artists, and it is this trait which leads me to the problem:

    I, as I'm sure all of you do, follow (literally) hundreds of producers through all sorts of ways and means, I'm also part of an online music discovery and recommendation community and I frequently go record shopping. The issue this lifestyle leads me into is that I'm trying to consume far too much music for my brain to possibly draw together in an organised way. I get so excited by all these new releases... like, 'it fuels my life' kinda excited... but because of this extreme rate of consumption I'm finding myself lost in a sea of awesome music, unable to remember the names of tracks, the way tracks build up and break down, whether there's a vocal hook which will make it hard to mix etc... perhaps the most challenging problem to overcome is when I have an event coming up, I'm looking at a Rekordbox library of thousands and thousands of songs and it's so hard to narrow anything down that is worth taking out.

    I've read several threads on this site and Digital DJ Tips with helpful advice, so far I have attempted the following:
    • Switching to real vinyl only, but I found this impractical as only a select few local clubs have technics, and those that do aren't in the best shape
    • Creating various nested smart playlists that feed off of one another, allowing me to query my library for harmonic compatibility, common sounds etc - I still use these as they are really helpful, but they don't help me to learn my music any better, if anything this sort of thing encourages dependency on software
    • Limiting my downloads - like smoking, this is something I find very hard to give up, I get so excited by new tunes


    So, down to you... what sort of things do you guys do to overcome these problems?

    My setup:
    MacBook Pro 15" 2012 w Traktor Scratch Pro + Traktor Audio 6 / 2x Pioneer CDJ 2000 NXS
    2x Technics 1200 MK2 / A&H Xone DB:4 / 2x KRK Rokit 5 RP2s

  2. #2
    Tech Wizard
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Nottingham, UK
    Posts
    61

    Default

    Welcome to my world I've got a digital collection of nearly 14,000 tunes spanning multiple genres!
    There is absolutely no way I can learn all of those so I tend to limit myself to a 'record bag' of 300-400 tunes that evolves over time
    I come from a vinyl background (around 1500 records) so I was used to having to limit myself or break my back!


    I use Traktor so I can play with a number of different tag fields
    New tunes I do immediately and I work on batch processing the rest

    Comments 1 is set to appear in the deck header in the track title default position (track title is moved to the field below it) and has track notation based on this http://www.djnotation.org/ This lets me know what my track is going to do even if I don't know it that well

    Comments 2 appears in my browser window next to the key field and ratings fields has mood/emotion descriptions

    I use the ratings to show a sliding scale of opening slot to peak time bangers

    I work on maybe 20-30 tunes in a sitting (one or two days a week), beat-gridding adding comments, rating etc and listening to each a couple of times to see whether or not they are worthy of going in my 'record bag' playlist

    This playlist gets played to death at home until I've truly learnt each track. It evolves over time as I get bored or I discover new tracks.

    Unless you have an almost photographic memory for music (and I do know people who have) it's a tough job to learn all your tunes so giving yourself pointers is the best thing to do in prep for a gig

  3. #3

    Default

    Some really useful ideas here Dave, thanks! I really like this idea you have of a virtual record bag:
    Quote Originally Posted by FilthyDave View Post
    I tend to limit myself to a 'record bag' of 300-400 tunes that evolves over time
    What form does this bag take, a playlist or something?
    My setup:
    MacBook Pro 15" 2012 w Traktor Scratch Pro + Traktor Audio 6 / 2x Pioneer CDJ 2000 NXS
    2x Technics 1200 MK2 / A&H Xone DB:4 / 2x KRK Rokit 5 RP2s

  4. #4
    Tech Mentor
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Chester, UK
    Posts
    143

    Default

    It's funny that this is here as i have just taken the decision to pack in DJ'ing, mainly due to the fact that finding new tracks was consuming my life! Unfortunately, I don’t have the disposition of limiting my time to sourcing new tracks and I found myself spending 4 or 5 hours a day (during my working hours – self-employed) sourcing and prepping tracks. I don’t even play out anymore, it’s just a 20 year habit!

    Also, I am 34 now and the thought of spending the rest of my days looking for tracks seemed pointless and very controlling of my time!

    I hope you find a good method to sustain the need of sourcing tracks,

  5. #5
    Tech Mentor
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Mechanicville NY
    Posts
    296

    Default

    Honestly, DELETE is your friend.
    90% of EDM is totally disposable. Sure it may sound great that first time you listen to 15 seconds of it but do most of these tunes have any lasting appeal?
    I keep my tractor library firm around 2000 tracks.
    Over the course of the year it will get a little bigger, and then regularly I go back and trim the fat.

    If I can't recognize a tune by it's name, it's gone out of my library.
    What I'm left with is pure quality.
    I still have a big iTunes library with 10K or so songs but it's really just a waste of space.

    Obviously if you're a mobile DJ who does weddings and dances this doesn't work.
    This is mainly for "EDM" (hate that term) DJs

  6. #6

    Default

    Personally I try to delete one song for every new song I add to my collection
    Traktor/Ableton /Komplete /MBP OSX el capitan

    http://www.soundcloud.com/deejaesnafu

  7. #7
    Schalenberg
    Guest

    Default

    About deleting music, is there a way to delete music all at once from every source (iTunes, rekordbox, traktor, and actual music folder)?

  8. #8

    Default

    If u select " delete from hard drive" in traktor when deleting it deletes from your computer entirely , not sure about rekordbox tho.
    Traktor/Ableton /Komplete /MBP OSX el capitan

    http://www.soundcloud.com/deejaesnafu

  9. #9
    Tech Wizard
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Nottingham, UK
    Posts
    61

    Default

    The 'record bag' is a playlist in Traktor

    I'm not going to take credit for it I got the idea and others I use off articles on here and else where

    My tunes are broken down into genre - sub genre format 'Psy - Goa' or 'Psy - Progressive' etc as the genre id3 tag

    This way I can just jump to a particular folder in the browser tree if needed and the key/rating/mood combination helps me pick the tracks.

    I don't use iTunes anymore and import directly to Traktor and do all my ratings and comments within it. I just don't trust iTunes given it's fucked up my collection in the past so much I had to redo the ripping of CD's

    This all started when I ripped my collection of about 500 CD's and didn't notice until I started playing them. Totally random bug that I subsequently reported (for what good that ever does with Apple)

    Basically I'd rip a CD in iTunes and all would be well but when I came to add artwork to the file it would randomly repeat the first 2 to 30sec of the tune a random number of times adding it to the start of the file

    Needless to say when I opened it up in Traktor the beatgrid would be way out and I'd have to spend a load of time sorting it before I could use the tune

    This wouldn't be every tune on a CD either it could be just one or 5-6.
    I reckon there was about 10% of around 5000 tunes like this and I figured it would take me longer to fish them out than it would to re-rip the lot using a different program

    Couple that with the time I moved my collection from one computer to another and on import it decided to randomly rewrite the names of files to the wrong tracks and I gave up vowing never to use it again apart for my iPhone/iPad using an entirely separate collection on my desktop.

    These days I rip CD's using dbPoweramp and if needed use Tag&Rename for downloads


    I can't delete any tunes I'm too much of a hoarder!

  10. #10
    Tech Guru Yul's Avatar
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    Sep 2009
    Location
    Aix-en-Provence, France
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    1,175

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    If you don't know your tracks your huge collection is pointless.
    What I tend to do:
    - to separate the tracks I like from the tracks I play (the ones that do fit my genre or my 'real' style) - meaning I'm asking myself the question for everything single track.
    - will I play a track next month, next year, how will it last? If it I'm bored of the track after playing it 3 times it goes directly to the trash bin
    - I use a star based sytem to rate each track from none (the one I do have for my own pleasure to listen to but that I 'shouldn't' be playing) to 5 , 5 being an all time star, a classic. All of this within smart playlist by year (and star based crates).
    - each year in january I review the tracks I got from the passed year and from previous years (each previous one being easier to clean as the choices are more rock solid).
    - I use a digital crate of 250/300 tracks that I change every single week, if I add one track, one is removed.

    It helps me a lot to not get overwhelmed. And even like that...
    Latest mix

    There’s also an almost hermetic community that exists in many areas of dance music, where serious hobbyists feed off each other’s expertise but barely connect to the industry – despite many of those involved actually working in it.

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